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Veteran CNN anchor Don Harrison dead at age 61

Harrison May 2, 1998
Web posted at: 9:21 a.m. EDT (1321 GMT)

ATLANTA (CNN) -- Friends, colleagues and family members Saturday were mourning long-time CNN anchor Don Harrison, who died in the early morning hours after a long battle with cancer. He was 61 years old.

Harrison's life was characterized by his remarkable professional career. He was a member of the original team of anchors when CNN's Headline News went on the air for the first time as "CNN2" in 1982 -- and his face and voice had been a part of CNN's daily routine ever since.

Harrison, a native of Ottawa, Kansas, spent over three decades in the broadcast business. For 11 years he was on the staff of KCTV in Kansas City, Missouri, and for another four years he worked for KMSP in Minneapolis-St. Paul.

Watching Harrison on air, one would never have guessed the long and painful road he traveled. He lost a leg because of bone cancer at age 13 and a kidney, also because of cancer, in 1993.

Though some people may never have seen Harrison on the air, chances are they heard his voice since he was in high demand for voice-over work, for instance, for TBS.

In 1987, Harrison won the CableACE award for best news anchor. It was recognition for a man characterized by a firm voice, elegant style and deep journalistic integrity.

CNN's David Goodnow reports on a CNN pioneer
icon 2 min. VXtreme video

His colleagues at CNN also remember Harrison as the man with a wry smile and infectious humor, a man it was rewarding and a privilege to work with.


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